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Marijuana news from around the world

Time Magazine

Marijuana Becomes Most Popular “Drug” Used Around the World


With no proven physically addictive properties, marijuana seems no more a “drug” than other pain relievers, though it does offer psychedelic effects.  However, many still classify marijuana as a drug even as alcohol escapes this dubious distinction.  Alcohol can result in a physical addiction, which is why many face difficult times when trying to quit drinking.  Whatever the case is, it is now generally accepted that marijuana is far less harmful than consuming alcohol and new reports show the entire world agrees.

Several days ago Time Magazine published an article online entitled “Marijuana Now the Most Popular Drug in the World”.  The article cites a U.N. report that shows as many as 224 million adults worldwide smoke marijuana.  These staggering numbers do not even include those under the age of 18 who use cannabis.  We have learned lately that teen use in the United States is climbing and it would not be a stretch to assume this is the case worldwide.  Including teens would drastically inflate the U.N. statistics.  Though the numbers are not rising as much in the North America, marijuana use is climbing steadily in Africa and Asia.

As we have been reporting, the international movement for marijuana reform is outpacing the United States.  In a recent article, we reported on Uruguay making a historic move to legalize marijuana and how Colombia decriminalized marijuana days later.  The momentum around the world is clearly picking up as we now know from the U.N. data that the two largest continents are also seeing an increase in marijuana acceptance.  Israel is several steps ahead of America in their medical marijuana industry and has recently developed strains that have high levels of CBD (one of the 50 plus cannabinoids in marijuana) as opposed to the psychoactive cannabinoid THC.  These medically friendly strains will not produce the well known psychedelic “high” most commonly associated with marijuana use.

Though the Time article omits any mention of alcohol, it does not seem to include alcohol in the “drug” category.  With growing social and medical acceptance marijuana may be able to shed the “drug” classification in years to come especially as it has demonstrated far less addictive qualities and does not induce vomiting.  There may yet still be some setbacks for patients and marijuana advocates but the worldwide trend seems to indicate that marijuana is here to stay.

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